What if God texted you your New Year’s resolutions? Would you have to time to read it? Does God have expectations of each us? Certainly! Ephesians 2:10 say’s, “We are God’s master piece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the things he planned for us long ago”.
That’s so cool! We all have things to do. Our to-do list gets longer every day. The cool thing is that none of those things are in this blog. Each individual is unique. Your to do list is different than mine. But God’s plans are carefully crafted in a way to take you and me along a unique glorious journey to unexpected places if we are willing.
I hope this blog will inspire you to make God your passion in 2019. I hope in 2019 you will allow God to take control of your dreams so you can walk in His freedom and enjoy the release of doing the things He has always planned for you.
Quit something in 2019
We are the busiest society in history. Gosh, there is so much to do and so little time to do it! As difficult as it is to admit it when you get spread too thin something has to suffer. Something is going too pushed aside. Often it’s your family, marriage, job and of course God. Saying yes to everything means you are saying no to everything. You can’t be at your best when you are spread too thin. There is only 168 hours in a week.
The answer is simple. Quit something! To make room for new growth in your life something has to go. Maybe it’s one less ball game on the weekends or one less meeting during the week. It could be one less hunting trip with your buddies. Whatever it is you must make the call. Make the tough decision. Quit something and replace it with something far more valuable, Peace!
Get on top of your roof.
When our family moved to Arizona many years ago we were stunned to see how far you could see during the day and how the millions of stars would come down to the ground at night. When the kids where little we would routinely climb on to the top of our roof late at night to watch for shooting stars. The Big Dipper would sit right over our house about midnight. It was awesome.
One night I told the kids to not say a word, but just listen. After several awkward minutes Chris spoke up and said, “Dad I hear a coyote howling he is talking to us” a few more minutes elapsed and Rickey said , “Dad I hear two coyotes howling, they are talking to each other. ” Finally after several more minutes of silence Natalie spoke and said, “Dad I hear God”. “Really, what is He saying” was my response. I never forget what she said. Dad, “He is saying, Look up here I am in the Big Dipper, I am in the North Star and I am the light of the Moon.”
Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” God has something to say to you that can literally change your life. But you must be a position to hear Him. Find your place of solitude. Get on your roof and just listen.
Clean your closet
Most of us have way to much stuff. Our attics, garages, and storage buildings are filled with excess stuff. Hoarding has become a national epidemic. Do some spring cleaning in January. Throw some stuff out. Donate some clothes to Goodwill. Find out where the nearest landfill is. Clean your closet. De-clutter. But don’t stop there. I happen to believe that there is a direct correlation to our worldly possessions and our relationship with God.
The most important thing we need to do is to de-clutter our heart mind and soul. It’s easy sometime to clean the kitchen, the bathroom and vacuum the den but leave the closet alone. We stuff things in our spiritual closets and then forget about them. We hold on to bitterness and we refuse to forgive. We stop serving and we stop being thankful. I challenge you to ask God to help you open your spiritual closet and do some spring cleaning in January. When things that don’t last are gone God’s vision for your life will be open for you to see.
Do something people don’t do much anymore
• Write a letter or thank you note in cursive
• Hang your clothes out on a clothes line
• Read a book you can actually touch
• Take a picture of someone else
• Make real mashed potatoes
• Put photos in an album
• Linger at sunset
• Go on a road trip without any reservations
Don’t stop at echo canyon
Located on Highway 84 47 miles North of Santé Fe, New Mexico is Echo Canyon. You can stop there 24 hours a day and hear yourself speak. It’s pretty amusing to hear fifteen or twenty people yelling their name at the same time hoping to hear themselves speak back to themselves.
It’s nice when people agree with you, isn’t it? We feel good about ourselves and our ideas. But if we never open ourselves to constructive critique we can become blind to our own blind spots. No one is perfect but there are many who think they are.
When we surround ourselves with yes people we are guaranteed to fall short of our potential for our lives and ministries. It’s a good thing for a leader’s decisions to be analyzed and others are allowed to offer ideas. It creates enthusiasm and builds a sense of open and honest creativity and accountability.
• Echo Canyons inflate our own ego
• Echo Canyons cause good ideas to go unspoken
• Echo Canyons cause distrust in leadership
• Echo Canyons expose flaws
Don’t stop at echo Canyon in 2019! Drive on by. Be humble enough to accept constructive critique. Develop relationships with those who can point out your blind spots with love and humility and implement any changes necessary and enjoy the freedom God ordained change will bring.
Don’t always bark back
Shelbee our thirteen year old Golden Retriever has the rare ability to tune out the incessant barking of dogs when we are taking a walk. Her hair may stand up at times but no matter how loud or aggressive the barking is she just stays focused on the walk .
Only one time did she bark back. One day a little dog became very aggressive for no reason. Shelbee paid it no attention until finally when the dog got extremely aggressive, Shelbee let the dog know who was in charge. The little dog ran off with its tail tucked between its legs.
Listen up. We live in a very aggressive society. People are angry everywhere. The Bible tells us in Romans 12:18, “to live at peace with all men if it’s all possible.” Most of the time it is, but sometimes it isn’t. When it isn’t speak softly and remember Exodus 14:14, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Stay focused on the walk.
Make Your bed
Wow, Rick, that’s genius. Very profound. What’s the deal? Listen up! Just be faithful everyday in 2019 and make your bed. If you make your bed up every day it means you are up and are moving on with your day to “fulfill the works that god has planned for you.” (Ephesians 2:10)
It’s a fact that once you bed is made you are less likely to jump back into it. Secondly, faithfulness often leads to greater rewards. Making your bed, showing up for work when you don’t feel like it, teaching your Sunday school class week after week may seem routine and inconsequential. But people notice. Faithful people make a difference. And small tasks done more often than not lead to greater responsibilities. Ecclesiastes 11:6 says, “Sow your seed in the morning and at evening let not your hands be idle, for you do not know which will succeed.”
US Navy Admiral William H. McRaven said, “Making your bed will give you a sense of pride, it will encourage you to take on another task. Making your bed will reinforce that small things matter. If you can’t do the small things right you will not do the big things right. And by chance if you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that you made and a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better. So if you want to change the world. Make your bed.”
What say you?